President Mills reminds all about stadia safety

12 years ago

President John Evans Atta Mills says public safety at any stadium in the country should not be compromised after he laid a wreath at the cenotaph to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the stadium disaster that claimed 126 lives.

The country, a decade ago suffered its worst football stadium tragedy when on 9 May 2001, 126 supporters lost their lives at Accra Sports Stadium on a Wednesday evening while attending a league match between rivals, Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko.

President Mills reminded soccer enthusiasts, security personnel and sports administrators to imbibe the spirit of competition devoid of acrimony while imploring on all to ensure that such an incident does not recur in the country.

“In this case, it serves as an opportunity for us to look back ten years ago and examine the events and see what went wrong and take steps to avoid any future recurrence. This was a very painful event and not even time can lessen the pain. Especially in sports, let us compete in a healthy manner even regardless of the rivalry. And we think also, that those who are connected with the organisation of sports and those who are there also to protect lives, will so cooperate with one another that at the end of the day we will remember only the sporting event and not the tragedies that are associated with these events,” the President said.

The loss of lives saw Ghana and the Accra sports stadium record Africa's worst football tragedy.

Police officers fired tear gas into the stand in their efforts to control rioting Kotoko fans after Hearts overturned a one-goal deficit to lead 2-1 rather ended the lives of 126 fans who were crashed to death while attempting to escape.